Comment: Plan A is never enough

Sally Laker

The response to Brexit demonstrates the importance of a clear plan and strong leadership in both politics and business

It has been interesting to watch the reaction to Brexit across the country and the rest of the world. Although the referendum outcome was a shock, the truly surprising factor was that no one was ready with a Plan B. The result demonstrates the importance of a clear plan and strong leadership in both politics and business.

When running a business, one should have plans for both three to five years ahead and the long-term future. In every industry, things happen; boulders suddenly appear that seem impossible to pass.

But that is the whole challenge of business and it is called change. People afraid of change tend to fall apart when it happens, often because they have no plan.

My mantra throughout life and 20 years running a business has always been to have a Plan A, Plan B and Plan C. Plan A is what you want to happen and a chosen route to achieve it. When the boulders appear, you need Plan B. That also gets you to the end goal, although it may be a more challenging route. Plan C is the ‘kitbag’ option: it is not the route you want to take but, with all that stands between you and the goal, it is the only option left.

To implement any of these plans, you need a strong team around you and you must show clear direction in achieving the goal. That requires trust and loyalty, and empowering the team to make decisions at each level so that everyone is responsible for delivering their part of the strategy. Working together is essential.

Sally Laker is managing director at Mortgage Intelligence